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US-Individual

'US-Individual'
United States This chapter is based on information available up to 1 February 2011. Introduction For tax purposes, the United States includes the 50 US states and the capital city of Washington, District of Columbia. The United States exercises sovereign juris- diction over a number of possessions and territories, including Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the North- ern Mariana Islands. These possessions and territories are not subject to US tax legislation and are not parties to nor governed by US income tax treaties. Due to the nature of the United States as a federal union, income and other taxes are imposed by both the federal government and the state governments and, in some cases, by municipalities. Individuals are subject to federal income tax, estate tax, and gift tax. Individuals who are employees or who are self-employed must pay social security tax. The tax administration agency in the United States is the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The currency is the US dollar (USD). 1. Income Tax The United States imposes a net income tax on individu- als. 1.1. Taxable persons US citizens and residents are subject to taxation on their worldwide income even if they reside outside the United States. Foreign nationals are subject to US income tax if they become US residents or if they derive certain types of income from US sources. Foreign nationals are treated as US residents if they are lawful permanent residents of the United States (i.e. hold a US green card) or if they meet a substantial presence test. The substantial presence test is met if the person is present in the United States for (1) at least 31 days during the current calendar year, and (2) for at least 183 days during the current calendar year and prior 2 years determined by counting each day of presence in the cur- rent year as 1 day, each day of presence in the fi rst prior year as one third of a day, and each day of presence in the second prior year as one sixth of a day. Exceptions apply to individuals in exempt categories (i.e. foreign government-related individuals, students, teachers, and trainees) and to individuals who have a closer connection to a home in a foreign country. Married persons may elect to fi le either a separate income tax return reporting their own income and deduc- tions or they may elect to fi le a joint tax return reporting the combined income and deductions of themselves and their spouse. Unincorporated entities such as partnerships and limited liability companies (LLCs) may make a voluntary elec- tion under the Treasury Department’s “check-the-box” regulations to be taxed as corporations or as pass-through (transparent) entities. 1.2. Taxable income 1.2.1. General US citizens and residents are taxable on all income from whatever source received. This includes wages, salary, business income, and investment income. All types of income (with the exception of capital gains) are com- bined and taxed at the sa
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US Individual
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